Friday, May 16, 2014

Still Waiting.......

May 16.  It's still not Spring yet.  Not quite.  Oh, a couple of teaser days here and there.  But in the long run.....we can't plant flowers outside yet;  can't take the storm windows off; can't totally turn off the furnace;  can't cut the grass; can't do any painting or replace the screens; can't leave the windows that are accessible open....nor the door.

It's still cold during the day for the most part and near freezing at night.  There is rain 4 - 5 days out of 7.  And the winds!.....don't get me started.

But there's plenty of spinning and knitting.....mostly knitting.....going on.  I've finished the back and sides of the Aran sweater, and I'm about 5" into the sleeves.  Knitting both at once. There haven't been too many hiccups (read: rip-outs) along the way, so that makes me very happy.  There is, however, still the question of enough yarn.

Right now I'm just about finished spinning the light grey, which will be plied with 2 bobbins of the variegated green.  And they're not full bobbins.  So, there might be a small problem.  But I'll just salley forth until the very end.  If more wool has to be dyed, so be it.

We took a trip to the "big" city this week.  No, not that BIG city, but the one 53 miles from our home.  We need a new BBQ grill.  A charcoal grill, not propane.  And sure enough, the big box hardware store has them on sale for the month.'s a beauty!!  Much bigger than our old one.  With tables on either side, 6 hooks for utensils and pot holders, a warming shelf inside the grill, a deep charcoal well and a thermostat on the lid!!  Our old grill is about ..14 years old....and the bottom is starting to rust out.  Last year we kept it on the ground instead of the deck.  Because I could just see the bottom giving way as something was cooking..full of hot, hot coals....and setting the deck on fire!!

Both sons are supposed to be coming up for the holiday weekend. So I said to BH:  "hey, if we have sandwiches and snacks on Saturday, Ryan can put the grill together for us; then we'll have a cook-out on Sunday".   BH thought that was a great idea.  It saves us from monkin' around with it.

I also wanted a screen house that was on sale.  Haven't had a screen house in maybe 4 years.  This year I really want one.  So nice to be able to sit outside, day or night, and not get all bit up....or burnt up.  Anywho, the one that was on sale was very nice....12' x 12'  but it had a polyester "floor" inside.  Never had one with a floor.

Upon further discussion, BH says: "do you really want one with a floor?"  Ehhhh.....not really.  If you don't have it pulled taught, you're gonna get ripples in the poly.....and somebody's going to trip over you....or me.  Nah.....that's an accident you don't want to see happen.

So, we forego the screen house for now.  But still keeping an eye out for other stores.....other sales.

This weekend is supposed to be gorgeous!!!  In the 60's!!!  I'm planning on getting the flower beds in shape (thank goodness they are perennials), spot painting the propane tank, and got some painting to do on the roof of our conversion van.  Yeah.......

Whilst in Virginia for granddaughter's Army graduation, our hotel room was on the 2nd floor.  One evening, looking over the balcony to the parking lot, I see the top of the van.  OMG!!!  It's rusted right along the rain trough.  Crap.   Bought the Rust-o-Leum a few weeks ago.  This weekend may finally be the time to get roof painted.

We also bought a deck brush.....for scrubbing the deck, of course.  Last time I did that (a couple years ago), it was on my hands and knees with a household scrub brush.  That's something I don't want to do again.  So....the deck brush with stiff bristles and a long handle!  So that job is on the "TO DO" list.

Then there's the siding on the house.  Put on about 10 years ago, it's never been washed.  I can't stand it anymore.  It needs to be scrubbed and hosed.  BH never heard of such a thing (men! pfft) and thinks I'm either crazy or making this up (he's probably leaning towards crazy).  I don't care.  I'm sick of seeing the streaks of dirt...or whatever.....and there's some kind of funky growth that I noticed last summer.  Little bits here and there.  Looks like a mold....or bug eggs....I don't go poking around, just know it looks like hell.

The rest of this week is ice making and 2 dozen more hard rolls to be baked.

Oh.....this weekend is the Lake Elmo Shepard's Harvest....a fiber fest; just northeast of St. Paul.  Oh geezzz.....I forgot about that.  I love that fest.  Not too big; not too small.  And.....I do need different knitting needles.....I could use a blue "Firestar".....more stitch markers and holders...and always...more white wool;  maybe the lady from Wisconsin who sells Border Leicester for $1.25 # will be there!!  She wasn't last year; I was disappointed.  And BH will most definitely try to talk me into buying more bobbins.  'Cause I always need more bobbins.  And the price keeps going up every year....what's up with that?!

Yeahhhh.......those projects will have to wait another day.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Baby, the Rain Must Fall......

(Remember that song from the 60's?)  Yeah....but every day??  It's a bit much.

So, we had 5 or 6 (who's counting) days of pouring rain....and cold.  Yesterday was gorgeous!!  The next 3 days.....yeah.  Rain.  I don't even know if the ground is thawed out; can't get out there to try and dig in the dirt.  But on the bright more snow!!  (shhhh).

Well, it's been a while.  Last month we drove to Virginia for granddaughter's graduation from the Army training.  She graduated top of her class in helicopter repair and maintainence; was promoted to PFC; and got an award for excellence in her courses, her PT (highest of the women's scores) and her leadership (squad leader for 3 months).  And she got her Wings!!  We were so proud of her and so happy to be part of this milestone in her life.  And....we brought her home.

Now she is with the MN. Guard out of St. Paul.  She hopes to pursue the training with the Aviation Regiment.  When she called the base to inform them she was here, the sergeant said "we've been waiting for you! We definitely need your abilities; yes, we know who you are!"  That made her feel sooo much better.

And it's also time to look for employment and an apartment.  She's a bit nervous about it all...kind of overwhelming, especially for an 18 year old.  But with her determination and "grit"....she'll be just fine.

On the homefront, not much has been happening.  With a few good days, BH has been out gathering, sawing, chopping and stacking wood.  A chore he's been chomping at the bit to get back to since.....March.  If he ain't busy, he ain't happy.  Crazy.

Not much spinning going on.  I started the Aran sweater with my hand dyed painted green Shetland.  Got the back done; knitting both front panels at the same time; 16 more rows before the raglan shaping.  God, I hope I have enough yarn for the sleeves!  Because of my increased body volume over the winter (ahem), I had to add on extra stitches at the sides of the largest pattern size.  But if you've ever done Aran knitting, you know those sizes are always smaller than a regular knit.  You know, all that cabling takes up a lot of yarn and pulls the stitches in, making the sizing much smaller.   That's my story and I'm sticking to it!!

Our daughter-in-law is graduating from college this Friday.  6 years of schooling....while raising 2 boys and working 2 jobs.....and she finally made it....a  BA in Social Sciences.  We're planning on having a dozen red roses delivered to her Friday, and sending her a gift card so she can indulge in something that doesn't have to be figured into their budget.

She's the type of person who doesn't like to be in the limelight; no accolades, no parties, no fuss, no recognition.  She just wants to keep it's just everyday life.  That's just how she rolls.

I can't believe Mother's Day is this Sunday.  The months keep flying by, but the seasons are having a hard time keeping up.  Like we're in a time warp or something.

Our son from the Cities is coming up with his buddy.....because it's "Fishing Opener" this weekend.  So....guess what I'll be and entertaining.....and not for my benefit.  I was kind of hoping that the lakes would still be iced over.  I know....that's bad. 

Today we're going to take a ride and look at some least from the outside.  We found a few areas that we didn't know about last year.  One in particular is what they call a "patio" apartment.  One floor, like a little ranch home, with an attached garage and a bit of ground right out your door.  Just what we're hoping for.  Of course, we're still waiting for some action on the sale of our house.  But....a girl can dream, can't she?  That's one thing the rain can't stop!